Remember the $787,000,000,000 bank bailout bill that was passed back at the end of the Bush Administration? We were told it was an emergency infusion of money into our financial markets, to keep them from imminent collapse. Remember the 'summit' where Obama, McCain, and Bush sat around listening to the Fed Chief and the Secretary of the Treasury tell them (and us) that we had to IMMEDIATELY pass this money through Congress and get it out to the banks and lending institutions, so that they all didn't go belly up? All this money was appropriated by Congress, and control was given to a single man - the Secretary of the Treasury. There were no provisions for oversight.
This was a horrible mistake, and most everyone knew it at the time. Blame rests with both Republicans and Democrats for the creation of this mess.
Fast forward to today. Tim Geightner and his puppet-master Obama are in control. $500,000,000,000 of that original $787 billion have not been given out. That money, which was supposed to go out to avert an immediate disaster, has sat unused. It still has only one master - Geithner - who gets his orders from Obama.
The issue is this; the money doesn't actually exist. There is no bank vault stacked with bills from floor to ceiling just waiting to be given out. If the money is given out, it is just more deficit spending - the government will have to borrow from the Chinese to write checks against it.
Obama/Geithner can do anything they want to with the money - the bill authorizing it was written that way. It is their private slush fund - they could give it all to ACORN if they wish.
What should happen is this - Congress should repeal the legislation that established that fund, and basically renounce its existence. The $500,000,000,000 - which has never existed, and has never been needed for its original purpose - just goes away. It can't be used, and it can't become more deficit that the government can't pay. That's a bunch of money that wouldn't become a debt liability to our children.
Obama should lead the effort to get this to happen. He won't - that much money at his fingertips, with no control, no transparency, and no accountability is too much of a temptation for him to resist.
I don't know why this isn't a bigger issue in Washington. I would encourage Republicans to hammer on this, and use it as a campaign issue.